• Linda Villumsen (C), Anna Van Der Breggen (L) and Lisa Brennauer (AAP)Source: AAP
New Zealand's Linda Villumsen won her first UCI Road World Championship after finishing on the podium on five previous occasions.
By
Cycling Central

23 Sep 2015 - 7:27 AM  UPDATED 23 Sep 2015 - 10:56 AM

The transplanted Dane won five world championship medals between 2009 and 2013 and it appeared that the ultimate prize would always elude her.

Villumsen rode an almost effortless and well paced time trial to finish the 30km race against the clock around Richmond, Virginia in a time of 40min 29.87sec.

Finishing second was rising Dutch star Anna van der Breggen while defending champion Lisa Brennauer (GER) left everything on the road as she finished in the bronze medal position.

Australia's Katrin Garfoot put in one of the best rides of the day and came close to a medal in finishing fourth, 9.32sec behind Villumsen.

She covered the 30km distance in 40min 30secs, placing her in the virtual silver medal position with five riders still to complete their ride.

“It’s pretty amazing." Garfoot said. “I’m stoked with this. The time gap is pretty small compared to the kilometres that there are in the course. It’s realistic to keep fighting for those nine seconds for next year.

“My approach was to take it easy in the first lap, to settle in. Coming back over the bridge at the end of the lap, I knew I wanted to put it in a big gear and really hit it there. That’s where I could make up time.

“It was hard out there. I got the first time check, and I thought to myself ‘Let’s do this.’ What else can you do? I checked how I feel and what I should be doing, and I put my head down to do what needed to be done.”

The time to beat was set by 42-year-old American and two time Olympic and world champion, Kristin Armstrong, who looked like she would turn back the clock until the 30-year-old Villumsen dislodged her from the hot seat.

Slotting in ahead of Armstrong but behind Villumsen as the race came to a nail biting finish were Van Der Breggen, Brennauer and Garfoot.

Preview: world championships women's time trial
It's the turn of the women elite soloists to hit the tarmac for the UCI Road World Championships in Richmond, Virginia.

Germany medal again 

Earlier in the day the junior men's time trial was won by Germany's Leo Appelt ahead of two Americans, Adrien Costa and Brandon Mcnulty. Australia's Michael Storer finishaed 13th and Harry Sweeny came in 47th despite a crash.

“I rolled down the start ramp with pretty good legs and got into a pretty good rhythm,” Sweeny said. “By the first checkpoint, I was sitting in 15th overall. I had the legs to pick that up and really go for the top ten.

“In the last couple kilometres of the first lap, I came in to the last hill and came around an off-camber turn, the wind picked up and sort of threw me off my bike, which was a bit of a shame.

"I got onto my road bike, but there was a bit of negative thoughts creeping in from there. I had to push through to make it to the finish.”

SBS will broadcast the elite men's time trial on Thursday 24 September from 2:50am AEST on SBS/HD with streaming available right here on the Cycling Central website.